Good news from the PA Waiting List Campaign

July 18th 2014

Waiting List Initiative Approved in Final State Budget

The Waiting List Campaign is pleased to announce that funding will be available to provide services for individuals on the Waiting List. The state budget includes an increase of $13.1 million for a waiting list initiative for Home & Community Based Waivers for the 2014-2015 Budget year. With revenues below expectations, we are heartened by the commitment to address the needs of some of the nearly 14,000 people waiting for support.

According to the Governor's Office, funding will be allocated for:

Expanding Services for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities and Autism: Additional $13.1 million to provide home and community-based options for:  

  • 700 young adults who are graduating from the special education system to continue to live independently in the community;
  • 400 individuals who are on the emergency waiting list to access crucial services to keep them in their homes and communities; and
  • 100 adults with autism spectrum disorders.

Moving Individuals from Institutional Care to Community-based Care

An additional $2.8 million to increase community placement for individuals currently in state mental hospitals and state intellectual disability facilities, enabling the transition of 90 clients from state mental hospitals to progressive mental health treatment in home-like settings and 50 clients from state intellectual disability facilities to home and community-based settings.

Governor Corbett had proposed $22.4 million in February 2014 to serve the same number of people, but the amount was reduced in the final budget to $13.1 million. Revenue short falls created a budget deficit of $1.4 billion statewide. 

The Waiting List Campaign will be meeting with ODP Deputy Secretary Stephen Suroviec in the coming weeks to discuss the impact of this funding cut.

Thanks to all of you who called and visited your state officials. We need to continue working hard to advocate for enough funding to end the waiting list.